Sunday, June 17, 2012

Who Did Bald Best?

Among the latest news to come out of Hollywood is that Charlize Theron has shorn her beautiful blonde locks for the upcoming film Mad Max: Fury Road.  Anne Hathaway made news recently too for losing her hair for Les Miserables.  They join a long list of actors who have sacrificed their hair for their art.  If the role demands it, stars seem willing to go under the razor.  Some have opted not to lose their locks, but rather to wear bald caps and make-up (like Cameron Diaz in My Sister’s Keeper.)  If going bald means enhancing the believability and quality of a performance, there appear to be few qualms about doing it in Hollywood.  Sometimes getting into character means a certain level of physical modification.  Whether playing a cancer patient, a badass villain or a badass chick, several actors have gone the distance and embraced baldness for film.  Here are a few notable baldies:

Natalie Portman – V for Vendetta

Portman lost her hair to play ally to a freedom fighter in a futuristic dystopian society.

 Joseph Gordon-Levitt – 50/50
  
Gordon-Levitt took it all off – his hair, that is – to play a radio journalist who is diagnosed with a rare cancer in his spine and must undergo chemotherapy.

 Demi Moore – G.I. Jane

Moore shaved off her own long locks while playing Jordan O’Neill, the first woman to undergo training in the U.S. Navy Seals.

 Kevin Spacey – Seven

Spacey’s baldness enhanced the creepy, sadistic and diabolical nature of the serial killer he portrayed.

Sigourney Weaver – Alien 3

Weaver went bald for the third installment of the popular sci-fi series in which Ripley crash lands on a planet inhabited by hardened convicts with an alien stowaway in tow.

 John Travolta – From Paris with Love

Travolta played a bald-headed, goatee-wearing American CIA special agent sent to Paris on a mysterious mission.

 Robin Tunney – Empire Records

Tunney epitomized 90s grunge when she shaved her head to portray a hostile, antisocial and apathetic music store employee.

 Cate Blanchett, Heaven
 
Blanchett was shorn to play a vengeful wife who takes the law into her own hands by planting a bomb to kill a drug dealer after her husband falls victim to a drug overdose. 

Who wore bald best?  Are there other notable actors who sacrificed their hair for a role?  Let us know in the comments section.

20 comments:

  1. Sigourney Weaver, shame the film isn't quite as good as it could have been but she rocked that skinhead!

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    1. Sigourney definitely pulled off being bald, which was probably one of the highlights of the mediocre third installment of the Alien series.

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  2. I would vote for Natalie Portman.
    Great list overall! Didn't know that Blanchett went bald as well once.

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    1. I think Natalie Portman looked best bald too. I had forgotten about Cate Blanchett's role in 'Heaven' until I did some research about actors that went bald for film.

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  3. Natalie Portman is the only one who didn't go bald by her own will. So that makes her stand out for the win.

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    1. Is that right? Very cool.

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  4. I'm gonna go with Kevin Spacey and Sigourney Weaver.

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    1. Good picks. Spacey was simply cringe-inducing in 'Seven' and Sigourney was a bad-ass chick. Having no hair made both characters even more effective.

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  5. I'm going with Portman, too.

    This great list has inspired me. I'm going to to lose my hair, too. I've already started in the back...

    *looks in mirror. Runs.

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    1. Portman is my pick as well.

      Whoa, for real? If my post actually inspired a head-shaving that would be, well, crazy!

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  6. PO'TMAN MOTHAFUCKA!!!!

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  7. I gotta go with Portman. She looks surprisingly good bald.

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    1. It looks like it's Portman by a landslide. She does look good bald. Still feminine and beautiful.

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  8. The only one of these I saw is 50/50, but I'm really impressed by the women who went bald for art.

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    1. It is impressive. Agreeing to lose all of your hair for a role shows some serious dedication.

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  9. I think I'm going to have to go with Moore here. I love that her character did it as an act of defiance, but also for acceptance. Plus, she owned the hell out of it. Really interesting (and humorous) write up.

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    1. Moore is a great pick for exactly the reasons that you mention. What shaving her head stood for in the film makes it all the more meaningful and she DID own the hell out of it. Boy, was she badass holding her own with all the men.

      Thanks - I'm glad you enjoyed the post!

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  10. Well, the early teens boy I was at the time would say it was Persis Khambatta in Star Trek: The Motion Picture. I had never thought I would find a bald woman sexy, but she was. I found a pic here that shows her with and without hair: http://www.lozzipr.com/persis.html

    On a sad note, in confirming the spelling of her name on IMDB I found out that she died in 1998 at the age of 49 from a heart attack.

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    1. I'm glad you mentioned Persis Khambatta for this list. And thanks for providing a link to her picture. She looked great bald. Some women can really pull it off and she was one of them.

      Oh, that is sad. She was so young.

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